Skip to main content


Entry requirements

Find out which qualifications will be recognised in your Birkbeck application.


  • Applicants from Portugal who have completed the Certificado de fim de Estudos Secundários (previously Certidão do Décimo Segundo Ano) or Diploma Nível Secundário de Educação/Certificado Nível Secundário de Educação when awarded after three years of study at the upper secondary level can be considered for direct entry to an undergraduate course at Birkbeck. The marking scheme is on a scale of 0 to 20 where the minimum pass-mark is 10.
  • Applicants with the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma or A-levels will be considered for direct admission to our undergraduate degree programmes. IB requirements range from 28 to 30, depending on the course.
  • Applicants who do not meet the minimum requirements can consider a Foundation course, which allows students the chance to progress onto Birkbeck’s Bachelor programmes.
    • A-level AAA = 144 UCAS tariff points = comparable offer 20 (corresponding subject grades: A = 18)
    • A-level AAB = 136 UCAS tariff points = comparable offer 19
    • A-level ABB = 128 UCAS tariff points = comparable offer 18
    • A-level BBB = 120 UCAS tariff points = comparable offer 17 (corresponding subject grades: B = 16)
    • A-level BBC = 112 UCAS tariff points = comparable offer 16
    • A-level BCC = 104 UCAS tariff points = comparable offer 15
    • A-level CCC = 96 UCAS tariff points = comparable offer 14 (corresponding subject grades: C = 14).


  • To be considered for entry onto a Master’s degree at Birkbeck, a student from Portugal must have completed a Licenciado/Licenciatura or a Diploma de Estudos Superiores Especializados (DESE: Diploma of Higher Specialised Studies) from a recognised university. Please note that all applications are considered on an individual basis and you may be admitted to a Master's programme with a lower-level degree if you have work experience relevant to the degree applied for.
  • If you do not meet these criteria, you can apply for Birkbeck’s International Foundation Programme, which acts as a bridge between undergraduate and postgraduate study, preparing students to study a Master’s degree in the UK. There are progression pathways onto various courses at Birkbeck.
  • Another option is the Master's Foundation programme, which is available for 2- or 3-term progression onto a wide range of Master’s degrees at Birkbeck.
  • The grading scale ranges from 1 to 20, with 20 being the highest and 1 being the lowest. 10 is the minimum pass mark.
  • Portuguese degree classification:
    • 18 (alternative name: Muito bom com distincao; English translation or equivalent: 1st)
    • 16 (alternative name: Bom com distincao; English translation or equivalent: 2:1)
    • 14 (alternative name: Bom; English translation or equivalent: 2:2).

Research degrees 

  • The usual entrance requirement for a research degree is a Master’s degree from a recognised university; schools may accept students with high grades in the undergraduate degree.
  • Applicants are strongly urged to contact potential supervisors within the department before submitting a research application.